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This is the advice given to me by an LE training officer. "Start with the lightest shooting .38 Specials you can find. Become very familiar with the front sight. Start at close range, then when you're happy with the results, move up, move out".
I hear him say it all the time, even though he's in New Jersey, and I moved to Florida.
 

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First of all....I'm Not an Expert. I've done a lot of on-line research and about the best I can do is give you a few pointers.
Where do I start? #1. No wadcutters or LRN (for me) they foul the bbl more than Jacketed projectiles. #2. Lighter projectiles seem to recoil less. #3 Avoid "hot" loads, at least to start.
Try Winchester White Box. They're easily available and not too expensive. Wal-Mart has them in a "Value Pack", 100 rounds for about $39.
Midway has their page set-up to give a lot of information. I use it a lot.
Pick an ammo, click. When the page for that selection opens, you'll see "Technical Specifications And Use". Click on it. It will generally give you Muzzle Velocity (M.V.), and Muzzle Energy (M.E.) Go for one of the lighter loads.
Here is their page for .38 special. Click here: http://www.midwayusa.com/ebrowse.exe/browse?TabID=3&Categoryid=7509&categorystring=653***691***
Have fun.
 
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